By Carl Markham, PA
Tottenham interim head coach Ryan Mason feels he deserves an explanation as to why Diogo Jota was still on the pitch to score an added-time winner for Liverpool after his head-high challenge on Oliver Skipp warranted only a yellow.
The Portugal international struck to secure a 4-3 victory just 99 seconds after Richarlison thought his first Premier League goal for the club had secured a late point having come back from 3-0 down.
However, Mason was incredulous that the substitute’s high boot, which cut Skipp’s head, did not warrant a red card.
“I would like an explanation and a reason why it wasn’t. I can understand referees on the pitch missing it,” he said.
“My feeling at the minute was an instant red card because when your foot is five-and-a-half foot off the ground and makes contact and there is a gash, it ticks all the boxes.
“We want the VAR to help the official on the pitch at that moment, but an experienced referee and VAR haven’t given it.
“A player that shouldn’t be on the pitch decided the game.
“I felt like we didn’t get that decision, it was a big decision, a crucial decision and one you can’t really miss.
“I find it hard and impossible to really understand why.”
Mason was doubly unhappy after seeing his side fight back from conceding goals to Curtis Jones, Luis Diaz and Mohamed Salah (a penalty) inside the opening 15 minutes to draw level in the third minute of added time after Richarlison added to goals from Harry Kane and Son Heung-min.
“We come here and create so many chances,” he said. “On another day we win it with ease.”
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was also unhappy with some of the officiating, so much so that he pulled a hamstring charging down the touchline to celebrate wildly in front of fourth official John Brooks.
John Brooks the 4th official at Anfield today should not have to put up with the unacceptable behaviour of Jurgen Klopp today. The Law is clear and if we are to get improvement of the Technical area occupants then the law MUST be applied. Do not allow your authority to be eroded.
— KEITH HACKETT (@HACKETTREF) April 30, 2023
Former referees chief Keith Hackett wrote on Twitter that Klopp’s behaviour was “unacceptable” and that “if we are to get improvement of the Technical area occupants then the law MUST be applied. Do not allow your authority to be eroded”.
Klopp’s issue was more with referee Paul Tierney, but his post-match comments about the official may get him into disciplinary trouble.
“We have our history with Tierney, I really don’t know what he has against us, he has said there is no problem but that cannot be true,” he told Sky Sports.
“How he looks at me, I don’t understand it. My celebration was unnecessary, which is fair but what he said to me when he gave me the yellow card is not OK.”
When asked what Tierney had said, Klopp added: “I will not say anything about it. The refs don’t say what is said so I don’t say what is said.”
However, he still went on to criticise Tierney and their history, referring to last season’s 2-2 draw in London.
Klopp said: “Paul Tierney didn’t give Harry Kane a red card but Robbo (Andy Robertson) got a red card. It was not the first time, there are so many things.”
On his celebration in front of the fourth official, Klopp added: “Of course, we are emotional in these moments. It’s difficult. It is not OK, we shouldn’t do that. Yes, we are role models but we are human beings first and foremost.
“I didn’t say a bad word to the fourth official – not at all – but I pulled my hamstring probably in that moment so, fair enough, I’m already punished.
“A fair punishment for behaving not the right away. I have pain for a few days, Mr Tierney not.”